Biden Administration Launches Humanitarian Parole Program, Uniting for Ukraine


Today, the Biden administration unveiled a brand-new program, Uniting for Ukraine, which seeks to provide humanitarian parole to an estimated 100,000 Ukrainian nationals who have been displaced by the Russian invasion which began on February 24, 2022 for a period of up to 2 years.

What is Uniting for Ukraine?

Uniting for Ukraine is a new Biden initiative that will allow Ukrainian citizens to apply for humanitarian parole in the United States. Humanitarian Parole is a process that allows foreign nationals to lawfully enter the U.S., provides temporary lawful presence in the U.S., and protects that person from deportation during the parole timeframe that has been granted to the foreign national. Humanitarian parole is a temporary permission to remain lawfully in the United States. It does not provide law permanent residence (a green card) and does not provide a pathway to citizenship.

To be eligible, Ukrainians must have been residents in Ukraine as of February 11, 2022, have a sponsor in the United States, complete vaccinations and other public health requirements, and pass rigorous biometric and biographic screening and vetting security checks.

Ukrainians who are approved via this process will be authorized to travel to the United States and be considered for parole, on a case-by-case basis, for a period of up to two years. Once paroled through this process, Ukrainians will be eligible for work authorization.

Who can be a sponsor?

Effective Monday, April 25, 2022, U.S. based individuals and entities can apply to sponsor displaced Ukrainian citizens through the Uniting for Ukraine process, which will go live on the Department of Homeland Security website that same day.

Any U.S. citizen or individual, including representatives of non-government organizations, can sponsor Ukrainian applicants. Individuals and organizations seeking to sponsor Ukrainian citizens in the United States will be required to declare their financial support and pass security background checks to protect against exploitation and abuse. Eligibility requirements will include required vaccinations and other public health requirements, as well as biographic and biometric screening, vetting, and security checks.

Who will oversee the administration of the program?

The Department of Homeland Security will be administering the Uniting for Ukraine program. Once the program is live we will update our helpful links below with the program information.

DHS Recommendations

DHS has said, Ukrainians seeking refuge in the United States who do not have and are not eligible for a visa, should take advantage of this program, because it is the safest and most efficient way to pursue temporary refuge in the United States. The U.S. government is working with European partners to ensure Ukrainians can meet the vaccination requirements of Uniting for Ukraine. 

Travel from Mexico

DHS discourages Ukrainians from traveling to Mexico to pursue entry into the United States. After the launch of Uniting for Ukraine, Ukrainians who visit land U.S. ports of entry without a valid visa or without pre-authorization to travel to the United States through the Uniting for Ukraine program will be denied entry and referred to apply through this program.

Additional Pathways to Enter the USA through Europe – the U.S. Refugee Admissions

In addition to Uniting for Ukraine, the United States is announcing a new series of measures designed to expand access to existing legal pathways for Ukrainian citizens.

The Department of State will be expanding U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) operations in Europe to provide eligible Ukrainians with greater access to refugee resettlement processing under the Lautenberg program, while also expanding referral mechanisms for Ukrainians and others fleeing Russia’s war in Ukraine who are in need of permanent resettlement.

As part of these efforts, the Department of State will expand U.S. resettlement operations in Europe to provide more resources to process Ukrainian citizens for refugee resettlement under the Lautenberg program and will expand referral mechanisms for Ukrainian citizens and others fleeing Russia’s war against Ukraine to the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP).

The United States is working with European partners, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and NGOs to identify particularly vulnerable Ukrainian citizens and others fleeing the conflict who may warrant permanent resettlement through USRAP. These particularly vulnerable populations include women and girls, children, older persons with special needs, members of ethnic and religious minority groups, LGBTQI+ persons, persons with disabilities, medically fragile individuals, and stateless persons.

Embassies and Consulates

In addition, European embassies and consulates are increasing, to the extent possible, the number of nonimmigrant visa appointments and ensuring there is an expedited visa appointment program for individuals with humanitarian, medical, or other extraordinary circumstances to get priority access.

Other Resources

The United States continues to provide resources to Ukraine including $300 million in distributions to assist with food, safe drinking water, shelter, and related sources. Resources of more than $1 billion are also expected to further support the displaced in the coming weeks.

Where can I find more information?

For more information please check out our helpful links below. If you are a Ukrainian national in the United States and you would like to apply for the TPS designation, we invite you to contact our office for a consultation.

Contact Us. If you would like to schedule a consultation, please text 619-483-4549 or call 619-819-9204.

Helpful Links


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